1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Panasonic announces the DMC-L1 Four Thirds System Digital SLR

Discussion in 'Panasonic Chat' started by ElectricPics, Feb 26, 2006.

  1. TimF

    TimF With as stony a stare as ever Lord Reith could hav

    DPR now has an 'exclusive' preview of the L-1. No sample images though, as these are presumably verboten until a production model comes available.
  2. Iloca

    Iloca Well-Known Member

    It certainly seems to be more than a simple re-badging exercise, the technology is shared but the execution makes for 2 very different products. Now if Leica do in fact release their version it'll be interesting to see what form it takes. :D

  3. TimF

    TimF With as stony a stare as ever Lord Reith could hav

    I was slightly disappointed that there was no explanation of how the shutter speeds between 1/1000th and 1/4000th, and 1/2th and 60 secs are "manually selected" (or did I miss something?).

    Nice to see however, that my previous guesses all turned out right! ;)
  4. Iloca

    Iloca Well-Known Member

    Just a guess here but assuming you were in Shutter Priority, perhaps if you turn the Dial to B/2-60s or 1/1000 - 1/4000 you can use the Sub command dial (normally used to control the Aperture) to alter the shutter speed within the above settings. When shooting in Manual I guess you could use the Exposure Comp Switch which would be redundant at that point. Seems a bit of a shame though but that seems to be the result of being able to adjust the shutter speed in 1/3 stops.

  5. TimF

    TimF With as stony a stare as ever Lord Reith could hav

    By pure coincidence, my copy of f2 magazine came through the door today. Inside is a look at the L-1 by Jonathan Eastland.
  6. Iloca

    Iloca Well-Known Member

    Hopefully that'll answer a few questions.

    What on earth was I thinking saying that the aperture was controlled by the sub command dial :eek:. One of the features that appeal to me is the fact that the aperture is controlled by the aperture ring on the lens.

  7. TimF

    TimF With as stony a stare as ever Lord Reith could hav

    Well, it is of course if an Olympus (or Sigma) 4/3rds lens is used. :)

    As for JE's piece, firstly it should be stressed that the sample he got to try out was a prototype, and definitely not a production camera, but the verdict appears to be "nice, but could do better".

    On scanning through, a few things that pop out are:

    The camera appeared to underexpose somewhat - a couple of samples pictures, with no obvious areas of highlights to fool the meter, were underexposed in one case by about a stop, and in the second by 1 to 1.5 stops.

    From a picture caption
    "Evidence of rastering to larger areas of continuous colour tones is seen ..... Detail resolution is adequate, but I expected better.

    From another picture caption, with the Leica zoom set to 14mm
    "As I had no tripod ... it is difficult to to ascertain the geometry of the lens from this hand-held example, but it looks to be very good, with no obvious distortion."

    "As has been the case with all Panasonic Venus Engines, colour interpretation veers towards magenta for all hues"

    "The colour gamut is excellent, but when the image is examined at 100%, there is evidence of noise in shadows in addition to a raster-like effect on larger areas of continuous tone colour."

    JE also comments on the unsatisfactory optical viewfinder (as with the DPR preview) which is dark and small (too small he suspected, for accurate manual focusing).

    On the lens, whilst he is generally approving, the plastic lens barrel was not to JE's taste. Olympus, he notes, spared no expense in using metal for the barrels of its own 4/3rds glass, so why Panasonic chose to cut corners here was a mystery.

    A bit of a curate's egg then, it appears. Hopefully some or all of the issues raised will have been dealt with on production copies.
  8. Iloca

    Iloca Well-Known Member

    Of course, :D I must have settled in to the E-1 then.

    I don't doubt the comments about the viewfinder being small/dark. AFAIK the E-1 is slightly bigger and much brighter than the E-300/500/330, probably due to the E-1 having an actual Prism rather than mirrors. While it seems fine to me, comparing well to the D70 that I had been using, looking through an OM4 finder after using the E-1 was like looking out the window, actually surprised me how much difference there was.

    With regard to the other issues I'm pretty sure Panasonic will have been fine tuning the L1 right up to the launch and I'd expect a firmware upgrade ready to go even now.


    p.s. I wonder if anyone else is interested in the L-1, it would be a shame if Panasonic went to all the trouble just so we'd have something discuss :D
  9. Wyeman

    Wyeman Well-Known Member

    Excuse me - I cant really contribute to your discussion, you're all way beyond my experience and understanding . . . but can someone please give me a brief explanation of the term "4/3rds" ?
    Many thanks
  10. Iloca

    Iloca Well-Known Member

    Don't worry about it, I frequently go beyond my own understanding :D

    I wouldn't attempt to try to explain it but here's a link;


    It's commonly believed to mean that the image ratio is 4/3, i.e. 6x8 inches, 12x16inches etc, while the ratio does apply, it's not the reason for calling it 4/3rds.

  11. Wyeman

    Wyeman Well-Known Member

    Thanks Richard - reading it now . . .

  12. Wyeman

    Wyeman Well-Known Member

    Ok, I've read the story on the web site, very interesting - I now know "who" did it, and I know "why" he did it, and I've got a reasonable idea of "what" he did. He established a standard for the sixe of the image sensor, and he called it "Four Thirds".
    Now I've got a problem. 4/3 is a fraction. IMHO it is gramatically incorrect to say, and I quote from the site, "The image sensor size that can provide the optimum balance between picture quality and easy-to-handle camera size is 4/3 (Four Thirds)."
    Four Thirds of what?
    I did wonder whether they meant the ratio of camera size to image sensor size, but that would be expressed as a ratio (4:3) not as a fraction.
    I think mabey I'm missing something here, something so simple that it's gone straight over my head !
    Can you shed any light?
  13. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    It's simply a marketing issue - 4:3 doesn't sound as sexy as 4/3 in the minds of those responsible.
  14. Iloca

    Iloca Well-Known Member

    Thats more than likely the reason, similar to referring to DSLR's with sub 24x36mm sensor as having a 'Multipication Factor of 1.5, 1.6, 2 etc when in fact they have nothing of the sort, they have a cropped angle of view. Or DSLR's with a 24x36mm sensor being referred to as 'Full Frame', which implies much more than the fact that a sensor is 24x36mm.

    Thinking about it, 'Full Frame' should be referred to as having a multiplication factor of 0.0 :D
  15. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    Surely 1.0x?
  16. Iloca

    Iloca Well-Known Member


    My daughter is learning her 2x tables just now, do you think I should try to help her? ;)
  17. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

  18. Wyeman

    Wyeman Well-Known Member

    Thanks fellas - silly me, expecting the industry to be gramatically correct and losing site of the fact that all they're interested in my (our) money. :)
    Ok, so, at least now I know what 4/3 means.


Share This Page